Top Ten Books This Week - Dec 26
On Dec 26, 2012
1. Uzma Aslam Khan : Thinner Than Skin : Rs-499.00
Thinner than Skin is a riveting novel about identity and belonging. It’s also a love story: between Nadir, a Pakistani man trying to make his way as a photographer in America, and Farhana, a Pakistani American woman who wants to return to a country she’s never seen. Together, Nadir and Farhana journey to northern Pakistan, accompanied by one of her colleagues – who will join her in studying that country’s extraordinary glaciers – and by Nadir’s oldest friend.
But they are not the only interlopers here: a suspect in a recent bombing has arrived just before them, and the authorities’ hunt for him casts a dangerous shadow over their journey. It is here, in this magnificent landscape – where glaciers are born of mating ice – that a chance meeting with a young nomad will change their lives, and the lives of those around them, forever. Thinner than Skin is a haunting tribute to these lands, and to the nomadic life of the indigenous people there, where China encroaches and Pakistanis, Uzbeks, Russians, Chinese, and Afghans, all come together to trade. It is a work of piercing beauty and intelligence, and an urgent novel for our times.
2. Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan : Cold Feet : Rs-250.00
Sometimes, you have to run away to find yourself.Sometimes, you find yourself where you aren’t looking. Sometimes, you find yourself only after you lose yourself. Amisha has found her perfect man and is going to marry him, but suddenly feels the need to push the boundaries of their relationship. Akshara is in love with her best friend, but while he will give her benefits, he won’t give her his love. Ladli has had her heart broken, so she runs away, only to find it waiting for her at the other side. Shayna knows what she wants in a man, but the man she wants is nothing like that. And finally, the girl who wants Shayna, actually just needs a friend. Cold Feet is the story of the strangely entwined lives of five women who live in Mumbai and deal differently with the same thing—love.
3. Ashok K. Banker : The Seeds of War : Rs-295.00
The Seeds of War, Book Two in Ashok Banker's MBA series, introduces us to the elder protagonists of the epic, as well as some of the great loves and lusts, friendships and enmities, politics and self-sacrifice that will lay the seeds that will eventually fester and erupt into the mother of all wars. At first it may seem that the journey is the reward, with seemingly unrelated love stories, fantastical tales of exploits in the heavenly realms, divine pacts and demoniac trysts. But it soon becomes evident that all these form a tapestry revealing the grandeur and glamour of the Kuru Bharata race itself, the growing descendants of the original tribe that established perhaps the greatest and oldest human civilisation ever known in recorded history. Their loves and enmities are epic, their stories astonishing, their personalities mercurial. Every page you turn reveals magical new thrills and wonders. As one larger-than-life personality after another strides onstage, the drama ratchets up to thriller level, the arrow swarms begin to fly and conflicts turn ugly as the author of the Ramayana Series once again proves himself the master of epics.
4. Sharmila Mukherjee : The Green Rose : Rs-250.00
To be a lesbian is to be different. It’s to be like the green rose amongst the red. Growing in the posh confines of south Delhi, the beautiful and accomplished Charu is a coveted match. However, all the matchmaking seems to fail when no dream marriage with a ‘foreign-posted’ groom seems to materialise—much to the amazement of speculating, fat Punjabi aunties of her neighbourhood and of her middle-class Bengali parents. Only Charu knows the reason. A reason which till now she’s hidden from everyone, even herself—that she’s a lesbian.But one lesson in love from the lady in the neighbourhood, and Charu knows there is no turning back on the truth. Not even when she wishes things were different, for her parents’ sake.
5. Lakshmi Raj Sharma : The Tailor's Needle : Rs-350.00
Cambridge educated Sir Saraswati Chandra Ranbakshi is a towering public figure in early twentieth century India. A firm believer in the ideals of Mahatma Gandhi, he also has faith in the virtues of the British Raj. As a result, he has to mediate between the Maharaja of a princely state and the Viceroy and strike a fine balance between tradition and modernity. This tussle between old and new values is reflected in his three children the daredevil Maneka, the timid Sita, and their brother, Yogendra, who turns their fathers world upside down by falling in love with a lower-caste girl.The Tailors Needle explores some of the great moral dilemmas of pre-independent India with wit and sensitivity.
1. Kareena Kapoor, Rochelle Pinto : The Style Diary of a Bollywood Diva : Rs-699.00
Kareena Kapoor was born to be a star. She has single-handedly introduced an entire nation to size Zero and become the highest paid actress of her time. In the Style Diary of a Bollywood Diva, the ultimate glamour girl lets you into her fabulous life. She reveals her best-kept secrets, tips and tricks. Follow Bebo as she goes from being a chubby teenager accompanying her sister on shoots to transforming into the hottest leading lady on screen today.
2. Naman Ramachandran : Rajinikanth: The Definitive Biography : Rs-699.00
Rajinikanth is, guile simply, the biggest superstar cinema-crazy India has ever seen. His stylized dialogues and screen mannerisms are legion, and his guy next door-cum-superhero image has found a hysterically appreciative following among millions of moviegoers. Naman Ramachandran's marvellous biography recounts Rajini's career in meticulous detail tracing his incredible cinematic journey from his very first film Apoorva Raganga in 1975 to memorable forays into Bollywood like Andhaa Ka noon and Hum. from landmark films like Billa, Thalapathi and Annamalai to the mega successes of Baasha, Muthu, Padayappa, Chandramukhi, Sivaji and Enthiran Along the way, the book provides rare insights into the Thalaivar's personal life, from his childhood days to his times of struggle when he was still Sivaji Rao Gaekwad and then his eventual stardom: revealing how a legend was born. Rajnikanth has not written his memoirs, this book is the closest we are likely to get to the definitive Rajini story.
3. Harish Bhat : Tatalog: Eight Modern Stories from a Timeless Institution : Rs-599.00
TATAlog:Log (English) = Record-keeping device, Log (Hindi) = People
From steel to beverages and from supercomputers to automobiles, TATA companies have broken new ground and set new standards of excellence over the past two decades. TATAlog presents eight riveting and hitherto untold stories about the strategic and operational challenges that TATA companies have faced, and the forward thinking and determination that have raised the brand to new heights. Among the engaging and inspiring stories told here are those of Tata Indica, the first completely Indian car that succeeded in the face of widespread cynicism; the jewellery brand Tanishq that has transformed one of India's largest industries; and Tata Finance, which underwent several tribulations yet demonstrated the principles which Tata stands for. Written by a TATA insider, TATAlog reveals the DNA of every TATA enterprisea combination of the virtues of being pioneering, purposive, principled and not perfect, along with tremendous human effort.
4. Rodolphe Durand : The Pirate Organization: Lessons from the Fringes of Capitalism :Rs-795.00
When capitalism spread along the trade routes toward the Indies when radio opened an era of mass communication . . . when the Internet became part of the global economy pirates were there. And although most people see pirates as solitary anarchists out to destroy capitalism, it turns out the opposite is true. They are the ones who forge the path. In The Pirate Organization, Rodolphe Durand and Jean-Philippe Vergne argue that piracy drives capitalism’s evolution and foreshadows the direction of the economy. Durand and Vergne recommend that rather than trying to stamp out piracy, savvy entrepreneurs and organisations should keep a sharp eye on the pirate space to stay successful as the game changes — and it always does. First published in French to great critical acclaim and commercial success as L’Organisation Pirate: Essai sur l’évolution du capitalisme, this book shows that piracy is not random. It’s predictable, it cannot be separated from capitalism, and it likely will be the source of capitalism’s continuing evolution.
5. Richard L. Nolan : Harder Than I Thought: Adventures of a Twenty-First Century Leader : Rs-1,250.00
Meet Jim Barton. He’s a newly minted CEO, rising leader of a firm in transition, and manager of massive complexity—thanks to our incredibly networked and increasingly unpredictable world of business. What if you were in his shoes? If you’re a top executive today, you probably are. This is a fictional narrative that puts the increasingly complex job of Chief Executive in a very real context. It serves as a practical guide by allowing you to walk alongside Jim as he takes on his new role and all its attendant challenges. Jim’s story—developed in collaboration with seasoned, real-life CEOs—includes crucial lessons for anyone hoping to master the new-world skills required of successful business leaders today. As the narrative unfolds, Jim grapples with an array of business crises, some he inherited and some of his own making. As events push this new leader to the edge of his abilities, he seeks counsel from a panel of advisers—resulting in a wealth of teaching moments bound to keep you captivated. Experts agree that many twentieth-century leadership practices won’t work in the turbulent twenty-first century. This engaging book gives you the insights you’ll need to navigate in a fast-changing business landscape.